Continuing on with my month-long script-reading adventure, today I tackled a show called Psych. (download script here).
Now, I've never seen this show before but after reading this script, I think it's time I checked it out.
The script itself is a 'Studio/Network Draft' dated 9/14/06, clocks in at a solid 54 pages and was written by Mr. Andy Berman. Breaking it all down, the script comes with a Teaser, four Acts and an Epilogue (Tag) -- final count: 7/9/10/9/17/1
At first I had a bit of trouble getting into this script -- part of it was because I'd never seen the show, part of it was because it's fourteen episodes in and thus the characters are never described.
That said, by about page 5 I had a solid idea who the lead -- Shawn Spencer -- was. Essentially, this show is an hour long, funny version of The Mentalist -- but pre-Mentalist. And with less focus on the procedural elements.
And funny. (already said, yes, but I felt it needed to be reiterated).
Like his more dour-faced successor, Patrick Jane, Shawn has a talent for being very perceptive and, uh... deductive? The difference between the two -- and this mostly comes down to approach -- is that Psych allows us to 'see' what Shawn 'sees'. We're allowed in on the clues with him, sometimes to hilarious effect. Alternatively, with Mr. Jane, it's all (conveniently) left abstract until needed. It does make Mr. Jane seem a bit more mysterious, I guess, but I found the approach here in Psych actually pulled me in to the script more, made me more interested in seeing how everything would add up.
Now, granted, Shawn's given a bit of an ace in the hole with the whole 'I have a photographic memory' thing -- at one point in the script, he takes three separate fragments of clues from three separate bodies and combines them together in his mind to come up with the 'real clue'. It's a bit of a jump, but to their credit they actually show the process. And, I guess, it does help to cement why Shawn is needed -- why he can do what no one else can. To any other disinterested cop it would've been case closed a long time ago. To him it's the one clue that truly breaks the case open.
I'm not sure if that's standard practice on the show (if Shawn gets his 'House' epiphany like this normally) but it was interesting... I'm not sure if I should bump on it or not.
One thing that really struck me was just how strong the comedy in this script is. I've never seen these characters or their interactions but everything was crystal clear and, in many occasions, hilarious. As in, I actually made physical sounds -- ones much like laughter -- as I read this script. You know how often you'll be sitting at your computer and you'll type 'lol' but, really, there's no laughter to be found? Yeah, it was the opposite of that. Well, sort of. You get the picture.
All-in-all I really, really enjoyed this script -- there's a runner in here, about Shawn discovering his not-so-rugged truth about his macho dad (think bubble baths and spray tans) that just slayed me. The main case itself was sort of a throwaway -- cool hook off the top but sort of a 'meh' resolution -- but it really seemed like the cases themselves were more of an excuse for Shawn and his partner Gus to clown around.
Anyways, was is a fantastic read -- so much so, I completely forgot to take many 'technical' notes. Looking back over it now, nothing's really popping as 'new' or 'different'. Just good ol' fashioned formatting.
I highly recommend you give this one a read.
Next up, another one of my favourite shows: Dexter episode 1x12- Born Free. Can't wait to sink my teeth into this one.